On a day where one thinks of thanksgiving, literally and figuratively, I find myself challenged by an ask to offer a blessing for a dinner with more than fifty in attendance. There are many different faith systems represented. There are those who do not believe, and many who are unsure. What should I say as a corporate blessing which brings them into a collective family while honoring where s/he is in their journey? As complex as the question is, from the perspective of how Life continues to lead and instruct, the foundation keeps echoing in the stories of my life.
Keep the conversation open. Even if the chat is with yourself because of the lack of any definite belief, keep the words coming. If you believe in an idea, person, or a supreme being, then “ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who “worry their prayers” are like wind-whipped waves.” (James 1.6) Every conversation has, eventually, a pause. In my experience, it is in the pause that Whispers emerge. In my experience, they often begin as quiet observations which inform and create awareness. The lesson reminder is of being open.
Pursue a quest for the best in life. When I am on the outlook for examples of care and kindness, these two friends show up in the places I least expect. Courtesies offered from one unknown driver to another on a busy road, one stranger paying it forward to another, and the individual reaching out to help a fellow human being who is trying his best on a lower rung of life. As I walked across several parking entrances, big, important looking cars waited for me to cross. As I motion thank-you, in return I was gifted with a silent thank-you in return, a stranger’s hand on his heart, an act of friendship despite our stark differences.
Use the gifts within reach. As I reflect on what I need, want, and am asking for, I see the love, compassion, and acceptance others have gifted me. I can, and will, do something with each.